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‘The Night Of’ Season 2: HBO Wants It, and Is Waiting For Word From Co-Creator Steve Zaillian

TCA: Also, Robert Downey Jr. is no longer on board to play "Perry Mason," and there are still no plans for a 'Veep' spinoff.

The Night Of Season 1 Finale John Turturro & Riz Ahmed

“The Night Of”

Craig Blankenhorn/HBO

Reporters have been asking HBO about a “Deadwood” movie for 11 years, and it’s finally happening. Now, HBO programming president Casey Bloys thinks “The Night Of” may be his new “Deadwood.”

That is, a project that HBO execs will forever be asked about until it finally returns. So here’s the latest on the second edition of “The Night Of”: HBO is still eagerly awaiting word from co-creator Steve Zaillian, but nothing yet.

“Steve is a little bit like Larry David, he will come to us when he’s ready,” Bloys told IndieWire, referring to David’s habit of not springing a season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” on HBO until he’s ready. “For a creative executive, that’s a nice feeling because if Steve is saying ‘I’ve got it,’ I know he has it. So we’re giving him his time and he’ll come to us when he’s found it.”

The first “The Night Of,” which aired on HBO in 2016, was a critical hit and also won five Emmys, including Riz Ahmed for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series. At an Emmy For Your Consideration event last year, Zaillian said he would “love to do it.”

“And when I say ‘we,’ I mean [co-creator] Richard Price and myself,” he said at the time. “If we can come up with something that we fall in love with, we’ll do it. If we don’t, we won’t.”

Meanwhile, Bloys confirmed that although beloved comedy “Veep” is ending next year, unlike “Game of Thrones,” there will be no spinoffs of Selena Meyer or her staff.

“There’s a lot of characters but I think the ‘Veep’ world, they have an amazing pitch for the final season. That’s where we let them ride off into their political sunset.” Star Julia Louis-Dreyfus is doing well after battling cancer, he added.

Speaking of things that won’t be happening, Robert Downey Jr. will no longer be involved in a new take on “Perry Mason” currently being developed at HBO. Downey Jr. was originally set to play the famed TV lawyer, with “True Detective” creator Nic Pizzolatto set to write.

But as reported last fall, with Pizzolatto focused on “True Detective,” Rolin Jones and Ron Fitzgerald took over as writers. Now, although Downey won’t star, the duo are still busy “writing scripts, which are good,” Bloys said.

Also still in the works are the recently announced “The Nevers,” from Joss Whedon, as well as Nicole Kidman’s “Undoing,” from David E. Kelley. Fred Armisen’s Spanish-language ‘Los Espookys’ is set for late night, while projects are pending from Tom Perotta, Danny McBride, Tiffany Haddish and more.

HBO CEO Richard Plepler “has been very vocal about the need to do more,” Bloys said, addressing the reports following WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey’s recent town hall address to employees. “This is not news to us that we need to do more programming.

“What Richard has had to deal with was a corporate entity that was taking our money and saying, ‘Thank you, we’ll take that!’ To have new owners who are talking about investing in HBO, that is a very new and exciting concept. Somebody talking about giving money for us to invest instead of sending money uptown…The bigger question for us is I know we can do more quality programming. The question is, how much is meaningful for subscribers but also allows us to keep quality control in place but not dilute the brand? So right now, it’s more than what we’re doing now and less than what the streaming services are doing.”

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